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From Old Japanese.

Compound of (わか) (waka, young, new) + () (na, greens).



(わか)() (wakana

  1. young greens or shoots
    • 905, Kokin Wakashū, (book 1, poem 21; also Hyakunin Isshu, poem 15)
      kimi ga tame haru no no ni idete wakana tsumu waga koromode ni yuku wa furitsutsu
      For your sake alone, I went forth to springtime fields and plucked these young greens while snow fell unceasingly onto the sleeve of my robe.[2]
  2. the shoots of the spring 七草 (nanakusa, literally seven kinds of herbs):
    1. used to make 七草粥 (nanakusa-gayu, rice gruel mixed with seven wakana herbs), or
    2. in the days of the medieval Japanese court, mixed with (atsumono, fish and vegetable broth); when eaten, thought to cure all diseases
  3. 餅粥 (mochigayu, rice gruel with mochi) mixed with the shoots of the spring nanakusa, traditionally eaten on the seventh day of the Japanese New Year
    Synonyms: 七種粥, 七草粥 (nanakusa-gayu); 若菜粥 (wakana-gayu)
  4. a courteous, young woman

Derived termsEdit

See alsoEdit

Proper nounEdit

(わか)() (Wakana

  1. name for the thirty-fourth and thirty-fifth chapters of The Tale of Genji
    1. 若菜 (Wakana Jō), the thirty-fourth chapter
    2. 若菜 (Wakana Ge), the thirty-fifth chapter
  2. a kyogen play
  3. a placename
  4. a surname
  5. a female given name


  1. 1.0 1.1 2006, 大辞林 (Daijirin), Third Edition (in Japanese), Tōkyō: Sanseidō, →ISBN
  2. ^ Helen Craig McCullough (1985) Kokin Wakashū: The First Imperial Anthology of Japanese Poetry : with Tosa Nikki and Shinsen Waka, illustrated, reprint edition, Stanford University Press, →ISBN, page 18

Old JapaneseEdit


From (waka, young) +‎ (na, greens).


若菜 (wakana) (kana わかな)

  1. young greens or shoots that can be mixed to (atsumono, fish and vegetable broth) or 餅粥 (mochigayu, rice gruel with mochi)
    • c. 759, Man'yōshū (book 11, poem 2838)
      kapakami1 ni arapu wakana no2 nagareki1te imo ga atari no2 se ni ko2so2 yo2rame2
      (please add an English translation of this usage example)


  • Japanese: 若菜 (wakana)